Number of under trial prisoners grieving in jails is alarming, Its close to 3 lakh

Our basic concept of jurisprudence is that the 100 culprits may let go free but no innocent should be punished. But the according to latest available government data the so-called ‘basic concept’ is totally violated. It’s alarming that close to 3 lakh undertrial prisoners are grieving in jails because the government is not taking any legal action on a timely basis for this.

As per government data, a total of 4,33,003 inmates were lodged in various jails across India, 14% more than the capacity of 3,80,876. So in this 2/3rd inmates are under trial.

The number of female UTP also needs to be noticed. UP again has the most number of under trials followed by West Bengal & Maharashtra.

What is an under trial?

Undertrial means a situation where the accused is facing a criminal trial but is not released on bail ( in prison ) and the law requires that such accused should get the speedy trial. However, it was observed that there are no. of such cases which are pending in courts for years and hence Supreme Court came to the rescue of such undertrial prisoners by pronouncing their temp. release and to face trial by remaining free.

This is the procedure and because of the government’s blind eye or the ‘due process,’ these ‘suspects’ are sacrificing their life in jails. Major count of the undertrial prisoners are from UP and Bihar and that sums up almost 96,000.

If we cross-check the reason behind why this much of under-trial cases are there will lead to a simple answer and that is lack of implementation of an existing law.

Section 436 of the CrPC was amended in 2005 to include a new section 436A.  n under trial prisoner (UTP) has the right to seek bail on serving more than half of the maximum possible sentence on their personal bond. Even though this close is there to make for the UTP, there hasn’t been any action took place to implement this.

Supreme court intervened in this issue from 2013, but the solution hasn’t been implemented so far.

Data: Factly